video cameras (Q3 experience)

John Hatton john_hatton at SIL.ORG
Fri Apr 9 04:04:42 UTC 2010

Lila asked:


> How did you find the battery life 


Battery life sounds bad, at 1-2 hours per pair, but in practice, I found
this was meant no more than one pair a day.  I’m sure everyone’s experience
may be different
 I found that being a good part of the community meant that
for every 10 minutes of recording, I spent at least another 50 chatting with
folks (and I’m an introvert).  I had a solar system, so I used that to
charge one pair while I was using the other.  


> and/or were there other power issues that came up?


My approach included getting everything I’d collected organized on a
computer at the end of each day (using some software we’re building for that
purpose). This meant copying the media over, typing in my notes and
expanding on them, associating informed consent artifacts (audio, video, or
photo of a page), and associating photographs of situations and speakers.
Here, the new “netbook” machines are wonderful; one charge gave me 10 hours
of computer time
 the drives are also now 200 Gigs or more, which was enough
to hold the video.  Occasionally I plugged in a larger drive which could be
tucked away out of site, in case of theft of the computer.

> Did you do any transcription using the Q3 for play-back, and if so how did
that go?

I have not done transcription yet.  I did do some “careful speech”/”oral
transcription” (careful repetition) using the netbook, a headset mike, and
external microphoneàUSB converter.  I have not seen any software yet that I
could readily train these speakers to use (including Transcriber), so I
would appreciate an suggestions on transcription tools specially designed
for first-time computer users without any formal education.

John Hatton 
 <> SIL Papua New Guinea,  <>
Palaso, &  <> SIL International Software Development
Chat Google Talk: hattonjohn Skype: hattonjohn Google Wave:
hattonjohn at



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